Tony Grist (poliphilo) wrote,
Tony Grist
poliphilo

Back To the '80s

There's a civil war in progress in Ukraine. Rebels have declared independence in the east of the country and the Government (which came to power in a coup ) sends bombers and other military planes over. The rebels- not unreasonably- try to shoot these planes down. Unbelievably commercial airlines kept on flying through the contested air space until the rebels- who have considerable fire power but limited expertise (theyr'e banditti, feedom fighters, terrorists and not properly trained soldiers)- hit one with a missile.

And somehow it's all Mr Putin's fault.

Russia may have supplied the rebels with the missiles, but every country with an arms industry supplies weaponry to its clients, friends and business partners. Britain supplies all sorts of foul dictatorships- including Russia. It's not unfeasible that the missile that downed the Malaysian plane contained British components.

O, 'tis war, 'tis war, 'tis war
That makes the world go round.

No-one wanted a civilian airliner to be shot down. The Russians certainly didn't. No-one gains except the Western nations who can use it as an excuse to parade their virtues. It's clear it was an accident- one of those stupid, horrible things that happen in war. No-one is to blame and everyone is to blame.

So why are the EU and the Americans pushing the Russians so hard on this one? Putin isn't a nice man but he's arguably as nice a ruler as Russia is going to throw up at this stage of her woeful history. Peaceful coexistence is entirely possible- and mutually profitable. The only reason I can think is nostalgia for the Cold War.  Defying the Russians allowed several generations of Western leaders to sound off heroically to their electorates- and today's leaders would dearly love to do the same.  The Cold War is their comfort zone and they're only too happy to snuggle back into it.
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